Wednesday, July 15, 2015
“The doctors x-rayed my head and found nothing.”
When the two researchers hopped on a conference call with Bradley’s coaches in early November to discuss their findings, they finally got a sense of the scope of the concept they were developing, and what it could mean for baseball. The coaches immediately requested the results of one player who seemed to struggle at the plate, despite obvious athleticism and a picturesque swing. Muraskin patiently explained the metrics he had recorded, seven data points in all, categorized by names like Neural Decoding Performance, Decision Position Metrics and Neural Discrimination Strength, all of which were different ways of measuring how and why a player could hit a baseball or not. On his laptop, the readout was filled with line graphs, column graphs, data tables and heat maps.
The player’s neuronal curve was shifted backwards, Muraskin explained. In other words, he was late recognizing certain pitches and therefore late in deciding whether to swing.
The silence on the other end of the line told the scientists all they needed to know. Finally, one of the coaches said, “We never understood why he’s not the best player on the team.” Now they had a clue.
“It was like ‘Yes, yes, yes!’” Muraskin said later.
“Those things keep you paddling,” he added, “instead of stabbing the raft.”
Tuesday, July 07, 2015
Former Mets utilityman and current Dodgers star Justin Turner cited philosophical differences as a reason why he and the Mets’ front office did not always get along. Turner, who played for the Mets from 2010-2013, says that his approach at the plate clashed with the organizational philosophy promoted by General Manager Sandy Alderson.
“[Alderson] is a ‘Moneyball’ guy,” Turner said to ESPN Los Angeles. “I don’t know if ‘Looking to walk’ is the right way of saying it, but he talks about on-base percentage. I’m never looking to walk. Sometimes when you miss pitches you should hit, you end up walking. I wasn’t worried about on-base percentage or anything like that. I was just trying to have good at-bats.”
The 30-year-old third baseman was non-tendered by the Mets in December 2013 after the team’s front office reportedly felt that Turner had not hustled during his tenure with the team.
Monday, April 06, 2015
Theo, I recommend plugging it in.
The 43-year-old company won’t reveal the specific MLB team using its Urika-GD appliance — which costs anywhere from $100,000 to more than $1 million — due to privacy and competitive reasons. But in an interview with GeekWire, Cray VP of Marketing Barry Bolding explained why his company’s products are now attractive to sports franchises and baseball clubs in particular.
For starters, Bolding notes that 95 percent of baseball stats have been created over the last five years thanks to the growing amount of data sensors and innovative methods of analyzing players.
“They are gathering so much data that a single person with an Excel spreadsheet can no longer analyze, in a sophisticated way, all the data they have,” Bolding said. “They need bigger and bigger computers to be able to analyze the data.”
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